The Great Tuxedo Challenge of 2012

When things get slow around here — or, to Krista’s ever-lasting dismay, even when they don’t — I tend to pose hypotheticals. Usually to Tim, because he will drop anything he is doing, no matter how important, and try to come up with a legitimate answer. Mike will play along, too, but his answers usually drive me insane. For instance, I asked, if you had to, what is the biggest animal you could kill with your bare hands? Mike said he could take down a giraffe, a choice I still find to be patently ridiculous. Anyway, several weeks ago, I asked Tim the following: What would it take to get you to wear a tuxedo every day for the month of July? He thought about it for maybe 15 seconds and answered, “I would do it in return for a nice tuxedo.” We were getting somewhere.

I am a persistent person. I am also, despite any evidence to the contrary, a very optimistic person, almost to a fault. Actually, completely to a fault. In addition to that, I am irrationally self-confident. So I always think I can get things done, and I generally try to get things done until well past the time it has been proven to me that said thing just will not happen. I say all that so you will understand this: I keep throwing out these hypotheticals in the belief that, one day, I will hit upon the right one, and Tim will agree to actually do one. I’m not talking about the time Laura got a giant barrel of cheese puffs and he put (I think) 15 in his mouth in under 15 seconds. (It might have been 30 seconds; we are currently without a staff secretary, so no record exists.) That was just fun and games. I’m talking about something with real stakes.

So, anyway, the Great Tuxedo Challenge of 2012. I don’t know why Tim picked a nice tuxedo as his reward. I have worn a tuxedo exactly four times in my life, so rentals are obviously just fine. I don’t think Tim is occasioned to wear one much more than I am, but he might have some creepy Eyes Wide Shut scene happening in his private life, so I won’t speculate. Either way, after we thought about it for a few minutes, the tuxedo thing seemed like a pretty good idea. After I realized he was going on vacation for a week in July, it seemed (to me) like a really good idea. Tim stuck deep sea fishing and riding go-karts and whatnot while clad in a tuxedo — I couldn’t have hoped for more.

We repaired to an off-site location and hammered out the basic structure of the deal. Tim would have to don the tux (complete with cummerbund) immediately after waking up and showering, and he would wear it until 9:45 that night, when he could change to footie pajamas or whatever he wears to bed. I gave him a few exceptions: he was allowed to take it off for one hour per day for exercising; he could loosen the tie while cooking; when he left for vacation, he could take off the jacket either on the flight out, or the five-hour drive to his final destination; and I think that was it. Maybe a couple of other small allowances.

What we needed was a sponsor. Obviously, it would make the most sense to get Al’s Formal Wear or some other tux rental joint. We were going to need several tuxedos at minimum. We also figured it would be smart to get a title sponsor for the whole thing. It would be a fair amount of exposure for whomever signed on. Tim would blog about it, there would probably be some video, etc. The company could maybe even earn some money for our foolishness, instead of the alternative, which we were already pretty familiar with. Not a lot. Some.

A day later, we ran into a local representative for a liquor company I won’t mention. We made our pitch. She liked the idea, or said she did. But she couldn’t make the final decision. Ultimately, the company passed, and we wasted too much time with that dead end, so we ran out of time to make it happen for July. We had a magazine to publish, and Krista had made it subtly clear that I was not to distract Tim from the mission of getting that done. Also: IT’S KIND OF A DUMB IDEA. So it didn’t happen.

At this point, I don’t really care about the money. Honestly, I never really did. I only wanted to make Tim sweat through a solid summer month in a tuxedo. August will probably be a scorcher, so it’s still possible. If someone can come up with enough scratch to get him a nice tuxedo as a reward, and fund a few rentals to help him accomplish my ridiculous request, we can all enjoy that together. I mean, I know more than a few of you want Tim to suffer, right? Now is your chance.

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